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House Approves CFTC Reauthorization, Changes to Dodd-Frank

After a nearly two year process, on June 24, 2014, the U.S. House of Representatives voted 266-144 to pass H.R. 4413, the Customer Protection and End-User Relief Act, which would reauthorize the Commodity Futures Trading...more

Senate Intelligence Committee Advances Cyber Sharing Bill

On July 8, 2014, in closed session, the U.S. Senate Committee on Intelligence voted 12-3 to report the Cyber Information Sharing Act (CISA). The bill would grant legal immunity for companies to share cyber threat data with...more

Sanctions Round-Up: Second Quarter 2014

In this issue: - US Authorities End Quarter Full of Enforcement Actions with $8.9 Billion BNP Settlement - US and EU Make Numerous Ukraine-Related Designations as Separatist Aggression Continues - US...more

House Passes Bill Reauthorizing Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS)

The House of Representatives on July 8, 2014, passed by voice vote H.R. 4007, legislation that reestablishes the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) program. ...more

Turning The Tide on “Trolls”

When a non-practicing entity (NPE) accused 16,000 small businesses of violating its patent by merely emailing scanned documents, the New York attorney general cracked down, forcing a settlement. Then the FTC threatened to sue...more

Trade & Manufacturing - News of Note - July 2014

Yemen Becomes the 160th Member of the WTO - Yemen became the 160th and newest member of the World Trade Organization (WTO) on June 26 – 30 days after depositing its "Instrument of Acceptance." WTO Members approved...more

Adoption of Fee-Shifting Bylaws by Pennsylvania Corporations

Recently, there has been some unusual excitement in the corporate bar in Delaware after the Supreme Court of Delaware held that a nonstock corporation could adopt a bylaw requiring a losing plaintiff in a lawsuit involving...more

Senate Finance Committee Considering Measure to Largely Repeal IRC Section 530 Safe Harbor for Most Businesses Using Independent...

Sen. Sherrod Brown (D.Ohio) reintroduced the “Fair Playing Field Act,” S.1706, in November 2013. The bill, which first appeared in 2010 under then-Senator John Kerry’s sponsorship, purports to close an ostensible loophole in...more

New Senate Bill Introduced to Clarify Definition of General Solicitation

The text of S. 2498, introduced by Senator Murphy in late June, was finally released. The bill is titled the “HALOS Act”, or “Helping Angels Lead our Startups Act.” Angel investors have expressed concerns regarding the...more

July 3rd Legislative Update

We hoped to NOT send a legislative weekly update in July, but we’re afraid this is just the first of many. The House and Senate have broken a logjam and are moving toward agreement on many of the items standing between them...more

Africa Update - July 2014

In This Issue: - Leading the News - United States – Africa Relations - North Africa - East Africa - West Africa - Sub-Saharan Africa - General Africa News - Excerpt from...more

Uncertain Fate of Non-competes in Massachusetts: Senate Passes Compromise; Legislation Heads to Conference Committee Negotiations

On July 1, 2014 the Massachusetts Senate voted for a compromise on employee non-compete agreements, and the Joint Economic and Emerging Technology Committee heard testimony on the same issue. Governor Deval Patrick spurred...more

Paying for Playing: SEC Brings First Pay-to-Play Action against an Investment Adviser

The SEC has brought the first action under the “pay-to-play” rule adopted under the Investment Advisers Act. Andrew Ceresney, director of the SEC Enforcement Division, served notice that the SEC “will hold investment advisers...more

Health Care Update - June 2014 #4

In This Issue: - Hobby Lobby decision further complicates ACA implementation - Implementation of the Affordable Care Act - Other Federal Regulatory Initiatives - Other Congressional and State...more

Delaware Fee-Shifting Legislation Delayed

In the face of opposition from business organizations, the Delaware legislature has deferred consideration, likely until the beginning of 2015, of proposed legislation (discussed in the Corporate and Financial Weekly Digest...more

US House of Representatives Passes Bill to Expedite LNG Exports

On June 25, 2014, the US House of Representatives approved H.R. 6, the Domestic Prosperity and Global Freedom Act, by a 266-150 vote. The Energy and Commerce Committee reports that the bill, authored by Rep. Cory Gardner...more

Exporters Pushing Back On Threats of Further Sanctions on Russia

Until recently, American trade associations including the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers have made their opposition to the imposition of further sanctions on Russia known to the...more

SEC Settles with Exempt Reporting Adviser over Pay-to-Play Violations

The SEC settled public administrative proceedings against TL Ventures Inc., a venture capital fund adviser (the “Adviser”), over violations of Rule 206(4)-5 (the “Rule”) under the Investment Advisers Act of 1940 (the...more

Patent Reform: It's Alive!

When Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced on May 21 that he was pulling patent reform off the agenda of the Senate Judiciary Committee, commentators were quick to pass judgment: "Patent reform is dead." These reform...more

GE food-labelling bill fails in California Senate

Despite the recent passage of a genetically engineered (GE) food-labelling law in Vermont, and similar bills appearing in legislatures in other states, proponents of labelling have again failed to pass such a law in...more

EU updates sanctions against Libya and Syria, and introduces import ban for Crimean products

The EU Council on 23 June 2014 took several sanctions-related actions,1 all effective on 24 or 25 June 2014, including: • the introduction of an EU import ban for products from Crimea and Sevastopol (and related...more

Recognizing Boycott Requests in International Transactions

Most American companies who do business internationally know that U.S. law prohibits them from agreeing to participate in foreign boycotts that the U.S. does not sanction. Most also know that the law prohibits an American...more

Court Ruling Puts Massachusetts Casinos At Risk

Yesterday, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court in Abdow v. Attorney General rejected challenges to a ballot initiative seeking the effective repeal of Massachusetts’s 2011 gaming law, directing the measure to be included...more

Update!—New TN Law Concerning Patent Infringement Allegations

In recent years, state legislatures have attempted to pass legislation regarding patent law – an area that the U.S. Constitution states is exclusively governed by federal law. The stated goal behind many of these laws is to...more

"SEC Issues Fine in Pay-to-Play Rule and Registration Requirement Violation Case"

On June 20, 2014, the Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC") censured and fined investment adviser TL Ventures Inc. for violating the SEC's pay-to-play rule, Rule 206(4)-5 (the "Rule"), and failing to properly register...more

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